Sort of a confusing night for me. There was a lot of discussion about America "getting" it, and I'll lump myself in with "America" because I didn't get it.
Best to Worst:
Lauren Alaina - I sort of might start pulling for her to win this thing (Auntee just died.) She sang the climb much better than Miley (which, I agree, isn't saying much), and she's getting SMART. She's pandering to the teens, she sung a ballad to pander to St. Pia's fans, she's even toned down the crazy judge-dancing, Ryan-flirting act and adopted (at least for now) a more mellow, grown-up personality. And she looked really pretty.
Haley - I like Blondie, I like Haley. I honestly don't understand how all three judges gave negative critiques of this. I thought she looked gorgeous (although I was a little worried the camera might show an up-the-dress shot on accident), and she sang/screamed "Call Me" just as well as she sang/screamed "Bennie" and "Come On".
Scotty - He didn't do anything new with the super well-known George Straight song, and it was totally predictable (I typed "predictable", but meant "boring"). I totally didn't get all of this "getting back to his roots" talk because he's sung country every. single. week. Hell, he found a country song during Elton John week! But, again, I was confused last night.
Casey, I guess - I totally didn't get this. I love jazz. I regularly frequented jazz bars when I lived in a city that had them. I love that Casey is an artist, and I really do think he's amazingly talented, but I didn't get Nature Boy and kept thinking of In The Air Tonight like Jimmy suggested. That said, I love his make-over. His hair and beard are shaping up nicely.
Stefano - I have to comment on his clothes because they're getting ridiculous. 1st it was the suit with the tennis shoes, now it's the too-small polo, too-small jeans, and tennis shoes. He could've done Boys 2 Men a real solid and wore a tie and sweater like they do. The. choppiest. version. of. End. Of. The. Road. ever. done. He might not have taken a breath between every word, but. it. seemed. like. it.
James Durbin - I don't get it. Admittedly, I don't like Heavy Metal. I can appreciate a good guitar solo, and am quite good at Guitar Hero, but that's as far as I go. I do like James, though, as a person. And I'd like to see him beat out most of the other contestants for that reason alone.
Paul - Last week I wanted Iggy Pop to flail into a wall or fall off the stage, this week I wanted Paul to flail into a wall or off the stage. The suit thing is getting trite, too. Honestly, I don't even think he's good looking anymore (except he does have the whitest smile ever made.) I've seen Old Time Rock and Roll done better by the drunk at the karaoke bar.
Jacob - The choir was good. And Jimmy reminded America that Jacob was a douche last week. So, that was fun.
Bottom 3 should be: Paul, Jacob, Stefano
Bottom 3 will be: Paul, Haley, Jacob
Random tangent: I believe that the judges are responsible for Pia's departure. And not because they "wasted" the save on Casey. But because they don't ever give negative critiques. Everybody gets the same glowing commentary every week. And without any subliminal guidance, America votes blindly.
What would Simon have said about Paul's flailing? We need a Simon to remind us that they are NOT, in fact, all good all of the time.